Radiation dating rocks

Some of the isotopes used for this purpose are uranium-238, uranium-235 and potassium-40, each of which has a half-life of more than a million years.

Unfortunately, these elements don't exist in dinosaur fossils themselves.

Clearly, Sedimentary Rocks A were deposited and deformed before the Volcanic Dyke intruded them.

These were then eroded and Sedimentary Rocks B were deposited.

The latest high-tech equipment permits reliable results to be obtained even with microscopic samples.

Radiometric dating is self-checking, because the data (after certain preliminary calculations are made) are fitted to a straight line (an "isochron") by means of standard linear regression methods of statistics.

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His geological cross-section may look something like Figure 2.For example, a geologist may examine a cutting where the rocks appear as shown in Figure 1.Here he can see that some curved sedimentary rocks have been cut vertically by a sheet of volcanic rock called a dyke.by Tas Walker A geologist works out the relative age of a rock by carefully studying where the rock is found in the field.The field relationships, as they are called, are of primary importance and all radiometric dates are evaluated against them.

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